NASA placed a order for 53 unmodified Nikon D5 DSLRs. The cameras currently cost about $6,500 each, so if NASA paid full retail price for each camera, they just spent at least $344,500 on this purchase.
NASA’s 2017 budget is $19.5 billion, so the agency just dropped about 1/56,604th of that on these cameras.
Nikon says that the D5 cameras will be delivered to the space agency without any special hardware modifications — they’ll be exactly like the camera found in camera stores. NASA previously purchased a batch of unmodified D3S DSLRs from Nikon in 2009.
NASA’s choice of camera “confirm[s] the incredible reliability of Nikon products, as well as their ability to withstand even the harshest of environments,” Nikon writes.